The SENs: Friday 31st March 2017

Senscot and Social Firms Scotland were in Brussels this week to reengage with the EUSEN, where we had the opportunity to take park in the Euclid Network’s Gathering to Grow II event at the European Parliament. The focus of the conference was to highlight the work of Euclid members and to support momentum in EU policy and funding for social enterprise. The conference follows on from the findings of the GECES report, which issued a call for action to the European Commission and member states to create and promote an enabling environment for social enterprises. Issues discussed with delegates from other member states included how SEs could positively impact migrant integration; how to increase SE visibility; and how the spread of policies from across member states could encourage the growth and development of the SE sector across the continent. On Wednesday, Senscot travelled to Kilmarnock to learn how Centrestage came to integrate food provision into their already impressive list of services. Initially offering food to increase concentration during music classes, Centrestage now make a meaningful contribution to the fight against food bank dependency in Ayrshire, providing a valuable lesson in how to identify an acute demand and adapt service provision accordingly. The visit to Centrestage was part of the Scottish Community Alliance’s Community Learning Exchange. We’re delighted to hear that this has now been extended for another 12 months. If you’d be interested in organising or hosting an ‘Exchange’, contact mail@senscot.net. News this week that Susan Smith (Dundee SEN) is stepping down from her position as chief executive. Susan has overseen much of the development and growth of Dundee SEN in recent years – as well as being a great supporter of the SEN movement across Scotland. She will be sorely missed – and we wish her the very best in her new adventures. Dundee SEN is now looking to recruit Susan’s successor – to lead it into its next stage of development. Here is Susan’s official announcement. You can apply to be Dundee SEN’s new chief executive through our website. The Edinburgh Wellbeing PSP continued apace on Monday with a Big Dialogue event. The first and second phase events each engaged with over 200 people to ensure that services developed under the PSP are shaped around individuals and their communities. Selection criteria to establish programme partners will be circulated by the end of April, with the process to be complete by the end of June. The service starts on the 1st of November and potential partners are being asked to consider if, and how, they want to be involved. Download full presentation slides from the event. The Glasgow School of Art Institute for Innovation and Design is calling all SEs in the Highlands who currently work, or would like to work, to tackle isolation and loneliness in later life. A new design research project is to be launched, bringing together a range of approaches, with the aim of developing a toolkit that would enable SEs to share best practice. Research interviews commence on the 7th of April, with a second phase of research based around a design workshop for participants, so any interested SEs are urged to contact Paul Smith, with more information available here. Our visit to Mytimeactive’s Healthy Powerful Communities event last week provided a great opportunity to hear about their work tackling childhood obesity. The session included inspiring input from participating families, reports on the clinical outcomes and a very open and honest account of some of the challenges and highlights experienced by third sector and statutory delivery partners. Great to see how social enterprise contributes to this agenda, especially with Scotland’s Obesity Strategy due out later this year.  Notices FUNDING OPPORTUNITY: The Lintel Trust still have some limited funding available to support social enterprise in Scotland. The money available is primarily available for small social enterprises who may not be able to apply to the larger funding providers. Contact kate.christie@linteltrust.org.uk to request a social enterprise application form. AWARDS: Volunteer Scotland are looking for individuals or groups that deserve an Inspiring Volunteer Award. Visit the Inspiring Volunteer Awards 2017 page for more information. OPPORTUNITY: The Growth & Replication Challenge, run by Social Investment Scotland, is looking for organisations who have developed strategies for groth and require investment between £100k to £1m. Expressions of interest are being sought until midnight on 3rd April. For more details see hereOPPORTUNITY: Healthcare Improvement Scotland have an opportunity for two senior managers to have around six to eight sessions of free Executive Level (ILM 7) coaching from two of their Improvement Hub’s (ihub) senior management team. The ihub is working to support Integrated Health and Social Care partnerships and improve the quality of services they provide for the people of Scotland. Contact diana.hekerem@nhs.net or gavin.russell2@nhs.net to register interest. WORKSHOP: Glasgow-based SMEs and SEs are invited to a free digital marketing workshop, delivered by Steve Lee from Tomorrow Design, a website design and digital marketing company. The workshop will focus on building an online presence, business promotion and developing an online community. See the full event flyerDates for the Diary West Lothian SEN: 27th MarchClackmannanshire SEN: 28th MarchEast Lothian SEN: 31st MarchDundee SEN: 15th May Best wishes, Kimkim@senscot.net